Saturday, July 28, 2012

Sound Technology of the 19th Century

Interesting to think about the interior soundscape of the time. I do talk about this a bit in the story--moving through interior spaces, contrasting the noise if the mill with the silence of upper middle class/middle class rooms.

Sound Technology of the 19th Century, via @Brainpicker

Friday, July 27, 2012

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Funny. When I was young I thought everything was talent and creativity and I felt helpless, no matter how many times I was told I was talented and creative.

Being told to just keep working--well. At least it's something I can do, something I can control.

The Guns of August/Tuchman

I'm not going to try to seem cool and say I didn't like the movie--I did--but I never got the fascination with the Titanic. As a tragic marker of the end of an era it never worked for me, possibly because I was too familiar with the names Ypres, Marne, Somme.

The first chapter of this book does. Called "A funeral", it is one of the most heartbreakingly lyrical pieces of historical writing I've ever experienced. The lists of royalty and leaders march in words like they had in the funeral procession of Edward VII in May of 1910.

The war never seemed so pointless or so inevitable than in those fourteen pages.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Structure and subplot

Listed all the subplots within the 1950 manuscript. Interesting -- they are all about the collapse and loss of family. Inspired me for a couple more concrete details to add to the book in general. However, it does not expose gaps as well as I had hoped.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Editing and Research

Recent research has included:

  • The Street with No Name (for the 1950 story);
  • Guns of August/Tuchman (for the adventure story);
  • The Crimean War/Figes (for the adventure story);
  • Wish Me Luck (BBC series) (for the 1939 story);
  • Carve Her Name With Pride (film about Violette Szabo) (for the 1939 story).

I really could use some working titles here!

Current editing:

Still trying to understand the structure process. Getting lost in midsection (story-world). Next step: peel out individual subplots and character arcs to help see where they have holes.

Eventually, I really hope to get a story structure process together. It feels so mysterious.


Need more work and thought around either fantasy or sf story lines. Both are currently too thin and the character voices are not strong enough to talk me through.